What’s in a School Yearbook? Content, Audience & Purpose

What’s in a School Yearbook? Content, Audience & Purpose

What’s in a School Yearbook? Content, Audience & Purpose 2048 1536 Spacific Creative

If your school is weighing up whether to produce an annual yearbook, try starting with some simple starter questions like:

  • What is a School Yearbook?
  • Who is the audience?
  • What benefits does a yearbook provide and what is its purpose?


Wikipedia defines a yearbook as “a type of a book published annually to record, highlight, and commemorate the past year of a school. The term also refers to a book of statistics or facts published annually. A yearbook often has an overarching theme that is present throughout the entire book.”


The audience for your yearbook may seem obvious: students and parents. However, school staff are an important secondary audience, as well as the board of trustees, the PTA and the wider local community. The purpose of the yearbook will differ depending on the audience. For busy parents, yearbooks provide a holistic view of the school’s culture, activities and achievements. For students, it strengthens bonds and delivers a powerful end-of-year statement of achievement and success.


Yearbooks create a sense of history and tradition and showcase your school. The National Library of New Zealand has yearbooks dating back to the 1900s. This demonstrates how significant these publications are as historical records.

An attractive, informative yearbook can work alongside more formal publications like your school prospectus, to promote your school’s identity and standing in the local community. Publishing costs can be wholly or partly subsidised by advertising and sponsorship by local businesses. When done well, partnering with companies can lead to other benefits for your school, including work experience opportunities, field trips or even scholarships.

A well-produced yearbook is a memento that students will carry with them into adulthood. It’s important to leave space in the book for personal, handwritten notes from fellow students and teachers. These annotations add an extra layer of significance to the publication and increase its keepsake value.


While yearbooks have a long history, they are constantly evolving with the times. Today it’s possible to create digital yearbooks that keep costs down and are easy to distribute. With Spacific Creative’s services, schools can create yearbooks with design styles akin to glossy magazines – with visually striking layouts and photography.